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Manga / How to Keep a Mummy

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The main cast clockwise from the front:
Sora Kashiwagi and Mii-kun the mummy
Tazuki Kamiya and Conny the child oni
Kaede Kashiwagi and Pochi the dog
Daichi Tachiaki and Muku-muku the Baku
Asa Motegi and Isao the dragon.

Sora Kashiwagi's father is something of an eccentric. He's an adventurer who has a habit of sending "gifts" home, including things such as a cursed Daruma doll and a murderous scarecrow. When his latest gift arrives in a massive coffin with a letter promising "an adorable mummy," Sora is, understandably, a little nervous. The last thing he expects is for the coffin to open from the inside...

...To reveal a little mummy small enough to fit in the palm of his hand. After realizing the Mummy is not dangerous, Sora decides to let him stay, giving him the name "Mii-kun."

How To Keep A Mummy (Miira no Kaikata) is a Japanese manga series by Kakeru Utsugi. It has been serialized online via Comico Japan since 2014. Futabasha has published four tankōbon volumes since February 2016. An anime adaptation by 8-Bit premiered on January 11, 2018 for the Winter 2018 Season. While mostly centered around slice-of-life comedy, the series also has its fair share of serious and heartfelt moments.

Crunchyroll is currently streaming the anime and hosting the manga. The webcomic is also published in French on Delitoon.

Tropes found in the series

  • Adaptational Early Appearance: Daisuke appears much earlier in the anime than in the manga, and many of the episodes that feature him actually take place before he even shows up in the manga.
  • Adapted Out: The anime removes Okamori, the guy from Sora's class who stole Mii. The plot where Mii gets lost at school is replaced with Motegi accidentally taking him when Sora offers to give her one of the Mii dolls he made.
  • Affectionate Nickname: Several examples:
    • Motegi's friends call her "Mogi-chan".
    • Motegi has nicknames for the three main boys: "Sora-chan" for Sora, "Tacchan" for Tazuki, and "Dai-chan" for Daichi.
    • Daichi calls Motegi "Acchan" and Tazuki "Kami-kun".
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Oji-san manages to be this to Sora and Tazuki, which is made especially impressive considering the fact that he's a Buddha statue at a shrine.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Even Tazuki, known for a sadistic streak of his own, gets legitimately scared when Sora gets angry. In the manga, he chases down one of his classmates for stealing and hurting Mii-kun, all while wearing a piece of paper with angry vein marks scribbled on it, which somehow make him appear even scarier.
    • Motegi has shades of this; when Isao shows up, she initially thinks he's a lizard. Her fear of lizards is so great that she throws all sorts of furniture at him.
  • Book Ends: The anime begins with Sora eating breakfast and doing chores and ends with Sora doing those things but with Mii-kun.
  • Caretaker Reversal: While Mii-kun is mostly too small to be able to take care of Sora during the show's Sick Episode, he's able to help by using his own body as a cool washcloth for Sora's forehead. It's all well and good, except by the next day it turns out Mii-kun's caught Sora's cold.
  • Childhood Friends: Tazuki and Sora, which makes the fact that Tazuki is the only character that addresses Sora by his last name even stranger.
  • Compressed Adaptation: The 12-episode anime covers events and characters whose appearance is much more spread out in the manga. For reference, Kaede only appears around chapter 17, Isao around chapter 30, Daichi and Mukumuku around chapter 50 and Aayan around chapter 100.
  • Cute Monster Girl: briefly discussed in an Imagine Spot before Mii-kun emerges from the casket; when Sora reads that the mummy is cute, he assumes it's one of these, and imagines her trying to strangle him, going wrong like all the other things his dad has sent him.
  • Cuteness Proximity:
    • Sora and Motegi are often quick to gush over how cute something or someone is. In Episode 6, they are overwhelmed by the cuteness of Mii-kun and Isao waving to each other.
    • Even Tazuki is so swayed by Mii-kun's cuteness that he can't bring himself to mess with the little mummy anymore when he accepts his apology in Episode 2, which causes him to mutter that something must be wrong with him.
  • The Cutie:
    • Mii-kun, of course! Although all of the other critters could qualify.
    • Motegi's so cute that even Tazuki can't help but admit it (albeit internally). Sora even mentions wanting to have her as his little sister.
  • Dancing Theme: The show's ending (set to "Rosetta Stone" by Iketeru Hearts) features the four main cast members in Super-Deformed form dancing alongside their monsters, as well as a short segment at the end done in the show's normal art style. There's also an official video that teaches all of the dance moves.
  • Death Is a Sad Thing: In a surprisingly somber moment in Episode 3, worrying over Mii-kun's odd behavior while sick causes Sora to recall a memory from his childhood. He found an injured bird and tried to help it, only for it to eventually die. It clearly upset him deeply, and in a uncharacteristically down-to-earth paternal moment, his father comforted him, pretty much saying this trope title verbatim.
  • Disappeared Dad: Played with. Sora's father is constantly away on adventures, but he loves Sora very much and is constantly sending him gifts from his travels. This is how Mii-kun and Aayan both enter the story.
  • Doting Parent: Tazuki often comments that Sora acts like one to Mii.
  • Dub Name Change: The mangaís French translation adapts the crittersí names − Mii-kun becomes Mimi, Pochi becomes Médornote , "Mukumuku" becomes "Bouboule" and "Aayan" becomes "Nub"note .
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Sora and Tazuki quite literally run into Daichi in Episode 2, a full five episodes before he's introduced in the series proper.
  • First-Name Basis: Everyone among the main cast, barring Tazuki, addresses Sora by his first name. Sora in turn addresses everyone by their first names, with the exception of Motegi, who he calls "Mogi-chan."
  • Friend to All Living Things: Motegi loves all kinds of animals, except for lizards.
  • Gentle Giant: Diachi is the tallest of the group, but also very nice, especially after he takes in Mukumuku.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Tazuki and Sora have been best friends since childhood.
  • Hiccup Hijinks: At one point Sora gets the hiccups and Tazuki scares the monsters by bringing up an urban legend that if you hiccup a hundred times, you die, so the monsters try to scare Sora's hiccups away by unwrapping Mii-kun's bandage.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: Tazuki, particularly when Conny runs away from home. He tells the others not to bother looking for him. Secretly he wants to find Conny himself and apologize without the others knowing.
  • House Husband: Combined with aspects of In Touch with His Feminine Side, Sora is good at cooking, cleaning, and sewing. Even Motegi comments that he may have more girl power than her.
  • Japanese Delinquents: Subverted with Daichi due to his bad dreams and Sleepwalking problem he often attacks people whilst still asleep.
  • Last-Name Basis: Tazuki addresses everyone barring Kaede and Tsukiyo by their last name. And the exceptions are only because the first shares a last name with his best friend (and thus, he addresses her by her first name to avoid confusion) and the second is his younger sister.
  • Lighter and Softer: In the manga, Mii-kun goes missing because one of Sora's classmates stole him. In the anime, Motegi accidentally takes Mii-kun with her by mistake.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: Daichi. it's more noticeable once he gets a good night's sleep and manages to fix his hair properly.
  • Misunderstood Loner with a Heart of Gold: Daichi's constant sleepless nights and violent outbursts caused others to believe that he's a delinquent, when he is in fact a decent guy deep down.
  • Mr. Exposition: Sora, since he's had the most experience dealing with mythological creatures.
  • Muscles Are Meaningless: Motegi is strong enough to effortless hurl bookshelves across the room. She's also a petite girl.
  • The Nicknamer: Aayan does this to many people, such as calling Sora "Soraino".
    • Motegi is one as well, giving nicknames to all three boys
  • Nice Girl: Motegi, to the point that Sora and Daichi find themselves comparing her to an angel.
  • Nice Guy: Sora, full stop. Daichi is also revealed to be one once he's able to get a decent night's sleep.
  • Non-Uniform Uniform: Sora and Daichi both refuse to wear their school's neck ties.
  • Not So Stoic: Tazuki, especially where Sora is involved; when befriending Sora in preschool, he cracks a smile when inviting Sora to school. Later, when Sora finds the sparrow, Tazuki has an uncharacteristic flair up about how "it'll be Sora that gets hurt" when the bird passes.
  • Odd Name Out: The cast names their cuddly critters Mii-kun, Conny, Isao, and Muku-muku, with Isao being the only one with a distinctly human name.
  • Old Dog: Surprisingly, Pochi is one. She's revealed to actually be fifty years old, and has a lifespan of at least 100 years. Aayan is also technically this, as he's a living Anubis statue that was found in an antique shop.
  • One-Man Army: Sora is considered to be this when it comes to the sports, to the point where he manages to beat an opposing team with the help of just one classmate.
  • Oni: Conny, the oni child who Tazuki ends up taking in. While he's smaller and cuter than the typical idea of an oni, he tends to be more rowdy and rambunctious than the other monsters.
  • Oral Fixation: Aayan likes to chew on things. It's apparently quite pleasant.
  • Our Gods Are Different: In episode 8, the god of the local shrine is willing to look after the imaginary creatures for the gang.
  • Papa Wolf: Sora is an incredibly nice and easygoing guy, but that all goes out the window anytime it looks like Mii-kun could be hurt. This is even more apparent in the original manga, where the "Mii-kun Goes to School" story involves not a misunderstanding with Motegi but a classmate actually stealing Mii-kun. When Sora goes to confront him, even Tazuki gets scared.
  • Perpetual Expression: All of the critters except Pochi have a single expression plastered on their faces and donít speak a word (except for Aayan the Anubis statue), meaning they only express themselves through sound effects (in the manga) or movement.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Basically the entire premise of the series. Besides the four adorable main monsters, there's also Sora's pet dog, Pochi.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Sora is nice, emotional and gifted in all household-related things, while Tazuki is more somber and brash; not that Sora canít be scary when heís angry.
  • Shounen Hair: Sora's hair style is a pretty classic example of this; bright orange and and spikey, with an Idiot Hair on top.
  • Sick Episode: Sora gets a fever in Chapter 25, and Mii tries to help take care of him by drenching himself in water and laying on Sora's forehead like a compress. Of course, the episode ends with Sora getting better, and Mii getting sick in his stead.
  • Smorgasbord Test: Sora offers many kinds of food to Mii-kun and records in his journal what it likes and does not like to eat. It likes apple slices, shirataki noodles, and dog food, but not cucumber slices.
  • The Smurfette Principle: Motegi is the only female among Sora's group of friends, if you donít count Kaede.
  • Supreme Chef: Sora's cooking skills are second to none.
  • Sweet Tooth: Conny. Which ends up biting him in the butt when Tsukiyo finally snaps over him eating her snacks so many times.
  • Tsundere: Tazuki is a Type B example towards Conny.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: In the anime, when Sora gives Motegi a plush toy version of Mii-kun, she accidentally takes the real one by mistake.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Motegi, who is completely fine around creepy-crawlies like beetles and roaches, turns out to have a deathly fear of lizards. As you may imagine, this presents a problem when a small dragon appears in her room one day.

Alternative Title(s): Miira No Kaikata